Reading and books are as important as ever

As the use of mobile devices increases amongst children it is important that they are still given the chance to immerse themselves in real books and encouraged to read. In our primary schools, children are expected to reach a certain level of reading ability by the time they enter key stage two at the age of seven, but this is an enormous challenge for some children who may be reluctant to read not only books, but any printed material. Parents and teachers may need to look for ways to inspire and encourage reading for these children.

Learning to read can be a difficult task for some young children but one approach to encourage reading is to refrain from making them read every day even though it is encouraged by many schools. Young children need to be shown that there is a purpose to reading whether it be reading the instructions to a favourite game or reading a recipe to make biscuits. This incidental reading is far better at encouraging children to read without them actually being aware that they are reading.

Playing games that require the players to read is another way to provide opportunities for incidental reading. Treasure hunts with clues that need to be read and reading instructions to play a new game are two ideas that parents and teachers can try.